Draft Infrastructure Investment Plan 2021-22 to 2025-26

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 24th September 2020.

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Photo of Michael Matheson Michael Matheson Scottish National Party

Willie Rennie is going wider than the purpose of the plan, and is starting to discuss processes around procurement. He will be aware that there is a significant concern about renewable energy investment being constrained and limited as a result of the approach that the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets and the UK Government are taking to contracts for difference, and how the regulator is interpreting the regulations on how investments can be made. I have made representations to the UK Government on that.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy needs to take action to allow greater levels of investment in renewable energy both onshore and offshore if we are to achieve our climate change ambition of net zero emissions by 2045, and achieve the economic benefits that we can get from that here in Scotland. My colleague Paul Wheelhouse will meet Ofgem next week to address a number of specific regulatory changes that we need in order to support the industry in Scotland and across the UK.

The procurement issue goes wider than the infrastructure investment plan. However, I assure Willie Rennie that we are very alive to the wider issues that he raises around renewables and the impact of regulatory function on how developments can be taken forward; we are pressing the UK Government to take urgent action on them.